Madwire Media brings digital marketing front and center

FORT COLLINS – When Joe Kellogg wondered in 2009 how small businesses were going to compete in today’s business climate, he came up with an idea with his son, JB Kellogg: Revamp how entrepreneurs will attract customers with marketing – but not your traditional idea of marketing.

“They used to say it was all about location, location, location,” Joe Kellogg said. “That is more true now than ever before, but we’re not talking about brick and mortar. It’s about where you come up in an online search.”

About 80 percent of web traffic goes to the top five sites that pop up in a keyword search. The father-and-son team created Madwire Media with a mission of giving businesses an edge, using elaborate Internet strategies to get Madwire’s clients in that top five.

“If the little guys are doing it themselves, their websites will generally wind up on page three or four,” Joe Kellogg said. “Nobody is ever going to see them. They’re basically irrelevant.”

Madwire offers clients a package deal that includes brand development, website design, search engine optimization, social media presence and other approaches that drive consumers to their sites.

When people visit a website, said Farra Lanzer, spokeswoman for the company, the business has about 2.5 seconds to keep them there. Using video is one way to increase face time with visitors.

“When we put our company video on Madwire’s front page, we saw or conversion rates increase by 400 percent,” Lanzer said. “Not only were people staying on the website longer, they were watching it over and over again.”

Forbes magazine recently reported that YouTube is the second-largest search engine in the world. Google owns YouTube and places higher value on inbound links from its own platform. The value of a one-minute video is worth 1.8 million words according to a study by Massachusetts-based Forrester Research.

“People would rather watch a video about a product or business than read about it,” Lanzer said.

Madwire created an in-house video and photography studio to answer to this rising trend. It creates corporate and product videos for its customers.

Another key strategy that keeps Madwire at the forefront of the digital marketing industry is SEO. Lanzer said the Madwire staff constantly is watching for changes in Google’s algorithms and trends “which can change literally every half hour,” she said.

Madwire guarantees that its client’s websites will turn up in the top three spots of a Google search.

“If someone is looking for a plumber,” Lanzer said, “We want our plumbing business to show up first.”

JB Kellogg described Madwire as basically the marketing and design arm for the small business that can’t afford a marketing department. With the wealth of services and knowledge Madwire offers, its clients potentially could have an enterprise-level agency working for them.

“Nobody does anything we do as well as we do it, at anywhere near the price point,” he said. “That’s why we’re different.”

Madwire has grown from a two-person operation to about 140 employees pushing out nearly 500 websites a month.

When asked what Madwire’s future plans are, Joe Kellogg said, “Just keep chopping wood.”
Correction: An earlier version of this story misidentified Madwire co-founders, father Joe Kellog and son JB Kellog.


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